Advanced Search

Crimson Exodus 2nd Edition
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Crimson Exodus 2nd Edition


The Second Edition of Crimson Exodus is here - funded by a heroic bunch of kickstarters.

This shiny new edition has the latest version of the Fantasy Dice game engine and a new fresh look, with a spectacular cover by Eric Quigley. Not only that, but it is now sold with no watermarking and under a fan friendly creative commons license.

The crimson banner has sailed. The Empire is on her knees. Ravaged by barbarians, plague and walking dead. Invaded and besieged by the Dwarven war machine. Swarmed with refugees from the Heartlands fleeing famine, plague, Orcs and lawless chaos. Town after town abandoned to the dead and reclaimed by beasts and weeds.

Crimson Exodus is a fantasy roleplaying game in a world of swords, sorcery, witchcraft, ancient ruins, crumbling empires, savage orcs and vast stretches of wild and unexplored lands. The book contains everything you need to play (just add dice and friends). Among its pages you will find:

  • Play a character from any of ten different cultures (get Mahada for 11th)
  • Thirteen paths (2 new!) that may make you legends - celebrated or hated
  • Carefully selected (and revised) skills - each with speciality sub-fields
  • Chapters on barter, assembling your own armour and plenty of weapons
  • Effortless game mechanics that offer tactical and creative gameplay
  • Three unique and distinct arts of the arcane
  • Chapters dedicated to artefacts, herbs, alchemy and a bestiary
  • A chapter of dark secrets to stoke the fires of the imagination
  • Advise on scene framing, pace and plot, handling NPCs and mass combat
  • An adventure, titled: Doom and Gloom
  • A richly developed world ready to be explored and expanded with your ideas

So what did customers here say about the first edition...

"First and foremost: I think I didn't see such a quality and innovations since the release of D&D 3rd edition. ...this book ROCKS!" - 5/5
- Paolo P.

"Simply put, the setting is dripping with flavor and has years of gaming potential in the core book alone - there's no clear-cut good/evil, lots of shades of gray." - 5/5
- Adam M.

"I enjoyed this book a great deal. The resolution systems has a unique twist on the roll and keep system found in such games as Legend of the 5 Rings rpg." - 5/5
- David

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (3)
Discussions (5)
Customer avatar
Vil K June 03, 2019 2:26 pm UTC
First of all great products, love Trauma and CE both, hopefully they will receive support in the future as well as new products.
One question regarding focused/deadly attack combo that states:
"A deadly and focused strike can be combined to get +1 WS by using both
actions instead of the -1D penalty."

If I want to increase the wound severity by 2 steps do I roll with -1D or something else?
Customer avatar
Claus B June 04, 2019 10:24 am UTC
Thank you, and yes.

From the deadly attack text: "For each die sacrificed the wound severity is increased by one. Limit how much it can be increased according to what seems plausible. As a rule of thumb the wound severity can usually be
increased up to three times this way." So you could increase wound severity by two with a deadly attack which gives you -2D, and then sacrifice your secondary action for a +1D. The result would indeed be +2 steps to the wound severity with a -1D penalty, but you would also have no secondary action for defence should your opponent counter attack. Also remember that an exceptional success will also increase wound severity by one (in addition to any increase by the deadly attack).

I would add that a greater increase of the wound severity should be combined with a greater requirement to point out a weakness or angle of attack sufficient to explain why it is more deadly.
Customer avatar
Andrew M January 14, 2017 3:20 am UTC
It was great when I first bought it, and it's still better than anything else I've come across in the intervening three years. I don't know how, but somehow, Crimson Exodus needs to garner more attention than it gets. This book is a masterpiece. It makes almost every move right. The only criticism I can muster on the spot is that the rules for magic and plague are hard to comprehend; they are subsystems of the game and are pretty esoteric in their system concepts.
Customer avatar
Claus B June 04, 2019 10:32 am UTC
I'm not sure why I didn't respond to this in the past, but thank you. I wanted "magic" to be something arcane, to be an integral part of the world, and for each of the arcane arts - witchcraft, sorcery and black arts - to be very different and use different arcane properties of the world. While knowledge of the arts should indeed be esoteric to the inhabitants of Known World, I have strived to not make it so to the reader. It seems I must strive harder, but there will always be a certain amount of complexity since too much abstraction and simplification would reduce the intentionally arcane arts to mundane magic.
Customer avatar
Andrew M June 07, 2019 12:49 am UTC
Hey Claus. Hope you're well. I've never really thought of the esoteric nature of the magic systems as a bad thing, really, because in a metagame way they *do* add a level of otherness, of difficulty, which makes the use of them more significant.

As an aside, I've been exploring a lot of OSR games lately, from Low Fantasy Gaming, Into The Unknown, to Sharp Swords and Sinister Spells and Macchiato Monsters. Each of these is a really great and valuable addition to the oeuvre of D&D retro-forward games, in the tradition of Whitehack and Black Hack. Steve Groznicki with Low Fantasy Gaming and his Midlands sandbox and huge library of good adventure seeds, Into The Unknown, an old-school hack of 5E and retro concepts, Sharp Swords and its great slim take on Sword and Sorcery, Macchiato and its pervasive and amazing use fo the Resource Die, all so great.

Crimson Exodus is still my favorite design overall, though. Your dice pool system is pure genius, and characters and paths a marvel of...See more
Customer avatar
Tommy K September 30, 2016 11:31 pm UTC
Hello, I have two questions for Claus;

1) I have the first edition of Crimson Exodus in both print and PDF. Is there any document available that summarizes the rule changes in the second version, without the need to buy the new edition?

2) If I will buy this second edition I would want it in print, but right now only PDF is available. Will there be a print edition available on DriveThruRPG at some point?

Thank you for creating a great game!
Customer avatar
Claus B October 01, 2016 8:13 pm UTC
Hi Tommy,

1) There is no such document, but I'll repost a slightly edited version of the changes originally posted on the game's forum below.

2) There is both a softcover and hardcover print version available if you go to the Radical Approach website Crimson Exodus page and look for the links there (you are also welcome to contact me via DriveThruRPG or website contact form). There are no plans to make a print edition available on DriveThruRPG. I have always been very pleased with the print quality at DriveThruRPG for my own products and those ordered from others. However, I was unable, despite several attempts and no doubt due to my own inadequacies in print production, to get the excellent level of quality for this book that I would want. For some reason the quality from the links on the website were so much better I couldn't in good faith offer an inferior version and I ran out of time and money to figure it out.

Thank you for your kind words, much appreciated.
Customer avatar
Claus B October 01, 2016 8:14 pm UTC

The second edition of Crimson Exodus integrates all the Fantasy Dice rule changes that have taken place since the first edition was released and will be familiar to readers of the Fantasy Dice book. While the setting itself remains the same the chapter order, fonts and layout has been improved upon - and I've commissioned some new artwork.

I won't try to list everything that has changed as pretty much all the rules chapters have been heavily revised or rewritten, but I'll highlight a few things. Note that this new version still plays much the same way as the first edition and the core part of the rules remains the same.

* The skill list has been slightly pruned – most importantly Perception is gone as a skill in favour of using the Sight attribute when notice rolls are needed and the emphasis is more on the skill of the person actively hiding, sneaking or setting traps. In the same fashion your sixth-sense is now entangled with the attribute for the associated type of magic....See more
Customer avatar
Tommy K October 01, 2016 9:18 pm UTC
HI Claus,

Thanks for a quick response. Yes, I have some books from Lulu since before and the print quality is very good. Thanks for providing the list. It seems that I will have to order the second edition then, the improvements seems to be worth it. I also guess it will be difficult to not get Trauma as well, I am a sucker for detailed wound systems with long-term consequences!

I have yet to come across a fantasy RPG that better suits my need for gritty low-fantasy with a good foundation for political intrigue, and with those mid-complex rules that hit the sweet spot. In other words, keep up the good work. I only hope that I will have the opportunity to GM it one day.

Thanks again, looking forward to future material. :-)
Customer avatar
brendon S April 01, 2016 2:29 pm UTC
hello, i was wondering if this rules system was intended to be used with maps and minis? thank you.
Customer avatar
Claus B April 02, 2016 3:42 pm UTC
No, although since the range bands specify specific distances and characters can move a specific distance each round depending on their agility (and whether they are running, etc.) it should work quite well.
Customer avatar
Chris M August 20, 2015 5:57 am UTC
Does this come with all the rules and content of the "Fantasy Dice" core rules by the same publisher?

In other words would I be missing out on any of the rules if I just bought this pdf? or is it worth also picking up the "Fantasy DICE system" pdf.
Customer avatar
Claus B August 20, 2015 1:49 pm UTC
Hi Chris,

Yes, the rules are largely the same with the Crimson Exodus rules being slightly newer.

The main differences is that in the Crimson Exodus book there is a new "Desperate Defence" tactic, suggestions for using D14 and D16 (basically, if you have them and want to allow skills to go higher then you can use them) and the optional matching sets rule for rolls (i.e. +2 bonus for each matching die beyond the first if chosen as result. So on a 3D6 roll of 10, 9, 9 the matching pairs of nines could be picked giving a result of 9+2, which is 11.).

Fantasy Dice does offer has a bit more guidance on using the system for your own setting, but does not have the fleshed out templates for player character cultural backgrounds (i.e. peoples and races).

Hope that is useful and make sure you grab the one page primer and combat primer as these are useful as a quick summary for players.
Customer avatar
Chris M August 20, 2015 6:01 pm UTC
Thanks for the prompt reply Claus B.

I am really intrigues with your core dice mechanic. I feels like just the kind of core resolution mechanic I've been looking for for years.

I'm a big fan of Savage Worlds, but I can't get over the bit that Stats don't have an impact on Skill test rolls. I've also looked into Cortex Classic and I like it but still that itch remains.

I think I'll pull the trigger and buy both PDF's. I hope your game is finally the "Fantasy Heart Breaker" (The Perfect RPG system) I've been looking for since I was a kid back in 82' lol.
Browse Categories
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!
 Recent History

Product Information
Electrum seller
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
105.14 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Last Updated:
November 15, 2013
This title was added to our catalog on December 04, 2013.